A Saint, abbot, He is an illustrious figure of and a most significant Coptic writer. Around 370 Shenute became a monk under his uncle Pgol, who founded the Monastery of St. Shenute, also known as the White Monastery. After the death of the latter in about 385, Shenute became the monastery’s abbot. The monastery grew considerably during his time. According to the version of his “Life” there were 2,200 monks and 1,800 associated with the White Monastery.

Shenute strictly with his monks and nuns, and his rule was harsher than that of Pachomius. He strove against paganism in his region. In 431, he participated in the of Ephesus with Patriarch Cyril. The writings of Shenute are of great importance for the history of Coptic literature. His works are of about 1,870 extant leaves, which represent only a part of what may have been once 25,000 pages.